|Publication number||US7129658 B2|
|Application number||US 10/879,982|
|Publication date||Oct 31, 2006|
|Filing date||Jun 29, 2004|
|Priority date||Oct 15, 2003|
|Also published as||DE602004032396D1, EP1673266A1, US20050082999, WO2005080162A1|
|Publication number||10879982, 879982, US 7129658 B2, US 7129658B2, US-B2-7129658, US7129658 B2, US7129658B2|
|Original Assignee||Honeywell International Inc.|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (30), Referenced by (4), Classifications (19), Legal Events (3)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 60/511,108 filed Oct. 15, 2003, the entire contents of which are hereby incorporated by reference.
This invention relates to braking systems utilizing electro-mechanical actuators, and more particularly, to a braking system and method using motor commutation sensor output to determine the position of an electro-mechanical actuator piston.
Braking systems using electro-mechanical actuators (EMAs) have been considered as alternatives to conventional hydraulic braking arrangements. In one previously disclosed aircraft braking arrangement using EMAs, a plurality of EMAs are mounted on a brake carrier housing in an annular pattern about the axis of wheel rotation. The brake carrier housing is fixed to a torque tube having stator disks of a brake disk stack attached thereto. Rotor disks of the brake disk stack, which project between the stator disks attached to the torque tube so that rotor and stator disks alternate, are fixed to and rotatable with the wheel that rotates about an axis. The EMAs are selectively energized in response to a braking command, causing a motor-driven, reciprocating actuator piston (“ram”) to extend and engage a pressure plate positioned on one end of the brake disk stack to compress the brake disk stack and retard wheel rotation. One EMA-based braking system is disclosed U.S. Pat. No. 6,530,625, titled “Electrically Actuated Brake with Vibration Damping,” the entire contents of which are herein incorporated by reference.
Another EMA-based braking system is disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 6,003,640, titled “Electronic Braking System with Brake Wear Measurement and Running Clearing Adjustment,” the entire contents of which are herein incorporated by reference. This patent discloses an alternative to visual inspection of wear pin indicators to measure wear of the brake disk stack and set running clearance. In this patent, position sensors are used to determine actuator ram position and set running clearance values. The inventor of this application has found, however, that the use of a dedicated position sensor in an EMA arrangement has certain drawbacks, such as increased cost, weight, and size. Use of a separate element for position sensing also reduces the reliability of the system. An embodiment of the present invention addresses these drawbacks as well as other drawbacks of known EMA-based braking systems.
These drawbacks and others are addressed by the present invention which comprises, in a first aspect, an electro-mechanical actuator braking arrangement that derives piston displacement from motor commutation sensor values. According to another aspect, an embodiment of the present invention is a method for controlling an electromechanical actuator braking arrangement by deriving piston displacement from motor commutation sensor values.
Another aspect of the invention comprises a braking system that includes a brake, a ram shiftable in a linear direction relative to the brake that includes an end face for engaging the brake and a stop surface. The system includes a motor having a stator and a rotor and a commutation sensor producing an output, the motor rotor being operably connected to the ram. A motor controller controls the motor based on the commutation sensor output. The system includes a first stop for limiting linear movement of the ram in a first direction away from the brake by engaging the ram stop surface, and a processor generates a position signal indicative of the position of the ram relative to the first stop based on the commutation sensor output.
In another aspect, the invention comprises a braking system including a brake disk stack, a ram shiftable in a linear direction relative to the stack that has a stop surface and an end face for engaging the stack, and a ballscrew/ballnut assembly operatively connected to the ram. The system further includes a motor having a stator and a rotor and a commutation sensor producing an output, the rotor being operably connected to the ballscrew/ballnut assembly, and a circuit producing from the output a commutation signal having zero crossings. A motor controller receives the commutation signal and produces a motor control signal for controlling the motor. A first stop is provided for limiting linear movement of the ram in a first direction away from the brake disk stack by contacting the ram stop surface. A processor is operatively connected to the commutation circuit and a memory, and the memory stores a first commutation signal value at a first time when the ram stop surface is contacting the first stop, a second commutation signal value at a second time, and a number of zero crossings between the first time and the second time. The processor determines from the first-commutation signal value, the second commutation signal value and the number of zero crossings the position of the ram relative to the first stop at the second time.
A further aspect of the invention comprises a method of controlling an electromechanical actuator controlled brake that involves providing a brake and an electromagnetic actuator, the electromagnetic actuator having a motor comprising a rotor, a stator, and a commutation sensor producing an output, and a ram having an end face and a first stop surface. A commutation signal is produced from the output and a value indicative of the displacement of the ram relative to a stop is derived from the commutation signal.
An additional aspect of the invention comprises a method of controlling an electric brake that involves providing a brake disk stack and an electromagnetic actuator having a motor comprising a rotor, a stator and a commutation sensor producing an output. An analog/digital converter operatively connected to the commutation sensor produces a commutation signal that varies from zero to a maximum value over a commutation sensor period and has zero crossings. A motor controller is provided that generates a control signal based on the commutation signal for controlling the motor. A processor is operatively connected to an accumulator storing a value and to a memory. The method further involves moving the ram until the first stop surface engages a stop, storing a first value of the commutation signal in the memory when the first stop surface engages the stop, zeroing the accumulator value, moving the end face toward and away from the brake disk stack by rotating the rotor, incrementing the accumulator value each time a zero crossing in a first direction is detected and decrementing the accumulator value each time a zero crossing in a second direction is detected. The position of the end face relative to the stop surface at a given time is determined by the following steps: determining a value k equal to a linear distance moved by the end face during a commutation sensor period, determining a present value of the commutation signal at the given time, subtracting the first value from the present value to obtain a difference, dividing the difference by the maximum value to obtain a quotient, adding the quotient to the accumulator value to obtain a sum, and multiplying the sum by the constant k.
Another aspect of the invention comprises a method of applying a force against a brake using the ram of an electromagnetic actuator that involves determining a predicted location of the ram based on a level of current supplied to the electromagnetic actuator, determining an actual location of the ram at a given time, determining a positional error between the predicted location and the actual location, and boosting the current supplied to the electromagnetic actuator based on the positional error.
Other aspects of embodiments of the present invention will become evident from the following description, with reference to the appended drawings.
Referring now to the drawings, wherein the showings are for the purpose of illustrating preferred embodiments of the invention only and not for the purpose of limiting same,
As described above, a known EMA-based braking arrangement includes a plurality of EMAs mounted on a brake carrier housing in a pattern about the axis of wheel rotation. The brake carrier housing is fixed to a torque tube having stator disks of a brake disk stack attached thereto. Rotor disks of the brake disk stack, which project between the stator disks attached to the torque tube so that rotor and stator disks alternate, are fixed to and rotatable with the wheel that rotates about an axis. The braking assembly 22 illustrated in
A commutation sensor in a brushless motor provides signals that are used by the motor control electronics (EMAC) to switch the currents in the motor windings to produce motor rotation (“commutation”). In the present embodiment, the commutation sensor is a resolver. The commutation sensor produces raw output waveforms that are fed through a resolver-to-digital converter to produce a useful commutation signal. An example of such an output signal is shown in
The signal from the commutation sensor 14 is not proportional to the output position of the EMA piston 20 over its full, range because the signal output by the commutation sensor 14 is periodic and has a period that may be a small fraction of the output range of the piston 20. The period of the output signal of the commutation sensor 14 is constrained by the requirement that it be suitable for its intended purpose (i.e., commutation), and cannot arbitrarily be extended to cover the output range of the piston 20. The motor controller 28 receives the commutation signal and uses it to control motor 12. In accordance with an embodiment of the present invention, a processor 31 produces a signal on a line 68 representing displacement of the piston 20 based on the output signal of the commutation sensor 14. Processor 31 is shown in
Operation of an embodiment of the present invention will be described with reference to
During IBIT, the motor controller 28 commands the EMA to retract, at a controlled low speed, until it stalls against its retract stop 24 at a controlled force at a step 30. The motor controller 28 senses that the EMA has stalled (either by waiting a prescribed length of time or by observing that the commutation sensor signal has stopped changing), and then zeros an accumulator 32 in memory 34 at a step 36. A first value of the commutation signal when the ram is stalled against the retract stop is recorded at step 37, and this stored sensor reading is later used as an offset to address the fact that the commutation signal may not be zero when the EMA is stalled against retract stop 24. The maximum value of the commutation sensor output signal is stored at step 38 and a value k equal to the linear distance moved by the ram over one period of the commutation sensor is stored at step 39. Steps 38 and 39 are listed to indicate that the two values stored in these steps are available for use in later calculations. These values are generally preestablished for a given system, and therefore these steps may be performed one time when the system is initially programmed and not repeated thereafter.
At step 40, the motor controller 28 monitors an input (using either hardware or software or a combination thereof) to determine whether an increase in braking force is requested. If an increase is requested, motor controller 28 causes rotor 13 to turn in a first direction at step 42 and monitors for zero crossings in the commutation sensor output signal. If a zero crossing is detected, motor controller 28 increments the accumulator value at a step 46. If it is determined at step 48 that the requested brake force has not yet been obtained, the motor controller returns to step 42 and rotor 13 continues to turn. If no zero crossing is detected at step 44, a determination is made at step 48 as to whether the requested braking force has been achieved. If the necessary force has not been achieved, the controller returns to step 42 and rotor 13 continues to turn. This process continues until the desired brake force is attained.
Once the required brake force has been achieved, or alternately, if no increase in brake force was requested at step 40, the controller 28 determines at step 50 whether a decrease in braking force has been requested. If a decrease in braking force is required, rotor 13 is turned in a second direction opposite the first direction at step 52, and controller 28 monitors for zero crossings at step 54. Accumulator 32 is decremented at step 55 if a zero crossing is detected. After the accumulator is decremented, or if no zero crossing is detected, a determination is made at a step 56 as to whether the braking force has been reduced by the amount requested. If an additional decrease in braking force is needed, controller returns to step 52 and rotor 13 continues to turn in the second direction. This process repeats until the desired brake force is attained.
In the event that the requested brake force is achieved at step 48 or 56, or in the event that no change in braking force was requested at steps 40 or 50, a determination is made at step 58 as to whether a measurement of ram position is needed. If no measurement is required, the process returns to step 40 and a determination is made as to whether an increase in brake force is needed and the process continues as described above. Measurements of ram position are preferably made periodically, but may also be made on demand or upon the occurrence of certain events, such as at the beginning of a system test. A position measurement can be requested at any time, for example, while brake force is being adjusted. This allows the real-time position information to be used for various purposes including for the improvement of dynamic braking performance as discussed below.
If a ram position measurement is required at step 58, the present value of the commutation sensor signal is recorded at step 59. The first value of the commutation sensor signal recorded at step 37 is subtracted from the present value of the commutation sensor signal to obtain a difference at step 60. At step 62 the difference is divided by the maximum commutation sensor signal value from step 38 to obtain a quotient. The quotient is added to the accumulator value at step 64 to obtain a sum, and the sum is multiplied by the value k stored in step 39 to obtain the displacement of the ram at the time the position measurement is requested and output a signal representing this value on line 68. These steps may also be described by the formula:
Displacement=k·[N+(X−X 0)/X MAX]
where k is a constant representing ram travel for each complete electrical period of the commutation sensor, N is the accumulator value, X is the present value of the commutation signal, X0 is the initial value of the commutation signal, and XMAX is the maximum value of the commutation signal. Values of X, XMAX, and X0 are illustrated in
The zero-crossing detection may filtered so that sample errors and noise near the zero position do not erroneously increment or decrement the accumulator. Such filtering may be performed a variety of ways, for example based on known maximum rate at which the sensor 14 turns (defining expected timing of zero crossings). This known maximum rate also sets a limit on the maximum possible difference between successive readings of the sensor; differences greater than this limit can be rejected as false readings.
There does not necessarily need to be a one-to-one relationship between motor revolutions and sensor zero crossings for this embodiment of the invention to work. For each revolution of the motor rotor 13, the number of zero crossings is based on the arrangement of the sensor. If the sensor is mounted on the rotor shaft, there will be one or more zero crossings per revolution of the shaft. If the sensor is connected to the rotor shaft via a gear arrangement, the number of zero crossings could be more than, less than, or equal to one per shaft revolution. The sensor's output period is optimized to meet the needs of the sensor's commutation function and may be used as described in connection with the present invention without further adjustment.
The above-described steps provide the motor controller 28 with essentially real-time positional information concerning ram 20. From this information, the actual position of ram 20, and in particular end face 21 that engages braking assembly 22, can be determined. This information is used in connection with a number of system tests and in connection with system operation as described below.
In one embodiment of the invention, the position of ram 20 is used, in accordance with motion-control algorithms, to measure brake wear, set running clearance, boost the motor's dynamic performance, and improve built in tests performed by controller 28 such as the IBIT described above. A first value that is useful to obtain is the location of the ram 20 at “rotors tight,” a position at which just enough force had been applied to braking assembly 22 to take the free play out of brake assembly 22. This value is obtained by extending ram 20 at a controlled low speed until it stalls at a controlled low force. This avoids undesirable high impact loads when the ram contacts the brake disk stack. The stall force of the ram 20 is proportional to the motor torque, which is proportional to the motor current, which is a controllable parameter.
The position of ram 20 when it stalls is recorded as the rotors tight position. This comprises a measure of brake wear because a given force will result in more ram travel to achieve rotors tight on a worn brake as compared to a new brake. This brake wear measurement is used to alert maintenance to service the brake. If the measurement returns a value too small to indicate a new brake or too large to indicate a fully worn brake, it represents a built-in test failure of the actuator.
The piston displacement value at the rotors tight position is updated each time the IBIT calibration sequence is executed. Thus, the reference rotors tight position changes as the brake wears. Because this value takes brake wear into consideration, it can be used as an accurate reference position from which to establish running clearance. “Running clearance” is a small displacement (typically 0.030″ to 0.100″ depending on the size of the braking system 22) of the ram 20 away from its rotors tight position, which prevents brake dragging.
Another step in the built-in test involves applying full force to the ram 20 until it stalls (as detected in a manner discussed above). Then the actual change in ram position is compared to the expected change. The spring rate of the braking assembly 22 is known, within some tolerance, and can be used to calculate the expected change in piston position that should result from a given change in piston force. If the difference is too small or too large, it represents a built-in-test failure of the actuator system, and the fault is reported and appropriate contingency management action is taken.
Another useful data point for use in monitoring the condition of braking system 22 is obtained by reducing the ram force to a predetermined level, such as 50%, for example, and comparing the measured position with the expected position at the predetermined level of ram force. This step comprises a further check of the proper operation of the braking system because too large an error indicates a problem with the system.
After the above tests are run, ram 20 is retracted a predetermined amount from the rotors tight position to establish running clearance. The ram position signal is used in a closed-loop control mode to hold running clearance at the desired position. Establishing running clearance is desirable because it affects the time required for the ram to engage the brake disk stack and begin compressing the brake disk stack. If running clearance were not established, it would require an unacceptably long time to actuate a worn brake. This completes the brake calibration process.
The measurement of the position of ram 20 can also be used in a process referred to herein as position-feedback transient torque boost. In accordance with one embodiment of the present invention, the real time position of ram 20 is used to boost the dynamic performance of the EMA. This allows the size and weight of the EMA to be reduced. This operation will be described with reference to
During a steady state application of brake force, the force of the ram against the braking assembly 22 is determined by a torque command to the motor-control electronics. Motor torque is controlled by controlling the current supplied to motor 12. Thus, a given current produces a given torque which results in a determinable brake force at steady state. It is desirable to reduce hysteresis when using motor current to control ram force as explained, for example, in U.S. Pat. No. 6,480,130, issued Nov. 12, 2002, entitled Method for Improving Repeatability and Removing Hysteresis from Electromechanical Actuators, the contents of which are hereby incorporated by reference. This steady-state force is independent of variations in the brake's spring rate.
However, during dynamic braking operation, a signal indicative of ram position (signal 208 in
As shown in
This algorithm beneficially combines steady-state accuracy based on motor electrical current, and fast dynamic performance based on closed-loop position.
Another use of the information concerning the real time position of ram 20 is protecting the EMA from damage caused by full speed impact against stops 24, 26. As described above, the EMA has internal physical stops 24, 26 to prevent ram 20 from traveling beyond the limits of the ballscrew/ballnut assembly 18. Normally, these stops are designed to withstand the full impact of the ram 20 when traveling at maximum speed (inertial impact). However, this imposes a size and weight penalty. One implementation of the present invention uses the ram position and motion-control logic in the EMAC to detect when the piston is nearing the internal stops and automatically slow ram 20 before it reaches one of stops 24, 26.
It should be recognized that additional variations of the above-described implementations may be reached without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention.
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|U.S. Classification||318/362, 188/71.5, 188/156, 303/20, 318/370, 188/72.1|
|International Classification||F16D55/36, H02K7/10, F16D66/00, B60T8/17, F16D55/08, G01D5/245, B60T17/22, F16D65/14, G01B7/02, B60T13/74|
|Cooperative Classification||F16D2066/003, B60T8/1703|
|Jun 29, 2004||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL INC., NEW JERSEY
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:ETHER, RUSS;REEL/FRAME:015535/0715
Effective date: 20040629
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